This school year is looking different for families all over the world. With at-home and hybrid learning becoming the new normal, we wanted to help out by sharing a couple of fun solar STEM lessons to keep things interesting.
1. Converting Sunlight Into Heat
How do we heat up water fastest?
3 clear cups (all the same)
2 sheets of white paper
1 plastic bag that will cover one of the cups
Directions: Fill each cup with the same amount of water at cool or room temperature. In a sunny place, set each cup on one of the pieces of paper and cover one of them with plastic.
Let the cups sit for an hour and each make a prediction on which cup will heat up the fastest and why.
Once the hour is up measure the temperature of each cup and see the results!
2. Absorbing and Reflecting Heat
Now that we know the sun heats things up, let’s see what else we can do with that sun power by making a solar oven!
Cover the inside of the box with tinfoil, on top of the tinfoil place a paper plate (also covered in tin foil, with tortilla chips and topped with shredded cheese. Then cover the part of the box where your plate is sitting with saran wrap. Leave in a sunny spot for 30 minutes and come back to see your results! Once the cheese is melted, break out your salsa and eat up! They may not be the best nachos in Texas, but they’re made with love by you and the sun!
Also, make sure to check out our very own Ryan Albert giving a solar demonstration to a 3rd-grade class - a super cool demonstration on how light makes power! To try this at home, you can order your own solar rover kit on Amazon.com.
We wish everyone a great start to the school year!